Monthly Archives: February 2012

Disclaimer I Don’t Expect Anyone to Read

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I am a novice blogger and my tech skills are minimal.  I attempt to accurately credit all photos I post here but I have not yet figured out how to provide links.   There is a wonderful blogging community and I enjoy visiting other blogs although I don’t often leave comments, especially if doing so is complicated as it seems to be on some of them.  I have to be logged into WordPress and I forget to do that before I go blog reading.  Currently my favourite blogs are all in my Bloglovin account and I haven’t learned how to list them here with links.  Perhaps it isn’t something WordPress offers.

The main purpose of my blog is personal.  I have embarked on a new course in life; I am divorced and have a much lower income than previously.  I once had a large house and garden; I now live in a rented apartment.  But I hope that will change in a few year so this blog is my dreaming place.  Here I record what I hope for in a home and garden, creating a log of what I like in decor and design.  I don’t know any other method of doing this, of putting words together with images other than here on a blog.  It is just an incidental that it is public.  Readers are welcome but I don’t require them.  I love people, I’m known to be warm and friendly, but I’m also a loner and an introvert by nature.

My iphoto programme is full of photos I have collected from blogs and websites.  Tech challenged as I am, I am unaware of any possible method of captioning or labeling these photos in my  files so they are uncredited and if I put them in the blog I will not be able to accurately credit them.  I can only say that if i use a photo that belongs to you and you wish me to remove it or credit it, please let me know.  I certainly have no intention of claiming the photos are mine!

The purpose of using such photos on this blog would be to provide myself with a method of identifying what elements of the image appeal to me and how I would want to translate that into my own future home.

So this is a personal journal in a public space.  Please feel welcome to look and comment and I would love to meet you.   Making new friends would be a happy side effect to this project.  I feel no obligation to entertain you, but my awareness of the public nature of this blog does show up in my writing.  Perhaps you will actually enjoy visiting me.  I promise to make you a nice hot cuppa and offer a plate of homemade cookies.

Answer Me This…..

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Just where are these lamps plugged in?

Set from Something's Gotta Give

For years designers have been encouraging us to pull our furniture away from the walls.  First of all that only works if you have a large room, and secondly it doesn’t allow for plugging anything in.  If you have outlets installed in the floor how do you get to them under the rugs?  Do you cut holes in your rugs hidden by the sofas?  Yikes!  That’s all I can say to that.

As someone who more often than not uses the living room as a place to curl up and read, table lamps are important.  If you only want them for mood lighting you can place them on tables that are against the wall.  But for task lighting, reading or knitting being the most common tasks that take place on my sofas, I need table lamps right beside the seating.

In addition to the lighting problem, I actually feel more relaxed and secure with my back to the wall.  I don’t know what that says about me psychologically, but floating in the middle of the room makes me feel a bit vulnerable.  I’m like an animal in my cave.   I snuggle in and keep a watchful eye on the world.

Trends I Have to Admit to Liking

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I am reluctant to like trendy things.  Mostly I just hate the thought of being trendy or of people walking into my home and thinking, oh she has one of those trendy whatchamacallits.    Sometimes things I have always liked do become trendy though and other times something that really is my style comes to my attention because of it’s trendiness.  This brings about the pros and cons of availability.  If it is trendy it is easier for me to get one.  It is also easier for everyone else to get one.

I don’t buy things because I want a little splash of the latest trend, I buy it if I love it and will keep it even when the trend is over.  The best thing about the trend ending is that I will find things I like in the thrift shops when people ditch them and move on to the next trend.

One of those trends is grey.  I love charcoal grey, slate grey, although not pale greys.  Grey as a trend is replacing brown as the neutral of the moment.  I still love brown too.  I have lived long enough to see them both trendy more than once so I don’t worry  anymore about whether it is in or not.  I just go with what I love.

image via apartmenttherapy.com

Just an interjection here-I intensely dislike grey and yellow together and pretty much most bright yellows in general.  Only lemons look good in this colour.

 

Moroccan pouffes in warm earthy shades of leather or kilim textiles have won my heart.  Please no neon colours or pink!

image via authentic.morocco.com

image via bohemiadesign.co.uk

 

image via furnish.co.uk

I’m wondering if I can make one of these rectangular or square shaped ones myself.  What are they stuffed with?

Pouffes make great extra emergency seating or an extra table with a tray placed on top.

The asian inspired ceramic stools, another item that can work well as a little table, have grown on me and I have found some I would love to have in my home.

image via mecoxgardens.com

image via thisnext.com

I’m not sure how trendy the next one on my list is, however, I did not think of it myself; I have seen it around on design blogs and other decor images and fallen for.  I love the look of black doors and even black trim.

image via thegardenweb.com

I don’t like the chairs but I love this trim!  I feel a bit steampunk!  As far as I know that’s the end of my trend-love.

Thrift Shop Addict

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I went to Value Village today.  They are a bit pricier than the charity thrift shops although they have a huge selection and generally good items.  I didn’t even go near the books and clothes but had a lovely time in the housewares section.

I had only been shopping for three minutes when I got the distinct impression there was a woman following me around.  I could see that she was watching what I put into my cart.  Eventually she said, “You look like you know what you are a good decorator.  I think I will follow you around.”  And she did!  It was a little annoying and a little flattering.  We chatted as we shopped, exchanging our bargain hunting tips and explaining what we might do with the various things we found.  She usually shops on Tuesdays, she says, because there is a discount for those over sixty.  She observed that I did not look like I could benefit from that event.

When I bring items from a thrift shop home, I usually purge as well.  My junk will become someone else’s treasure.  Out goes stuff that I don’t really like, no longer use or made a mistake in purchasing.

Here is what I bought today.  Missing from the photo are a large turkey roaster with lifting rack that I bought for my ex.  Yes, I know, that’s a serious thrift shop addiction if I buy things for my ex.  It is in excellent condition.

The picture frames will lose the cheap “art”, the silver needs a bit of cleaning and the linens all need to go in the laundry.  That paisley upholstery fabric is destined to become an ottoman or large floor cushion.  It is my goal to learn to sew a pouffe and I think I will do one in mixed fabrics so some of that fabric will go into that project too I suspect.  The large basket is meant to encourage my son to put his dirty clothes in it instead of all over the bedroom floor.  The wicker ball is for the cat to play with.  She loves it and did not like me taking it away for the photo shoot.

Also not in the picture are the pretty matte glaze violet bowls I bought for the cat’s food and water.  Those were immediately put into use and I forgot to add them to the collection on the table.   A galvanized aluminum bucket is not visible in the photo.  the stack of linens includes a pillow cases, a table cloth, a duvet and a bed sheet.  All in natural fibres of lovely thickness.  It would not surprise me if I dye the table cloth purple.  I am loving purple quite a bit these days, plums and eggplant colours and even, veering a little towards pink in a deep violet shade appeals to me.  I am very cautious about pink.

Oatmeal and Contemplation

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My Breakfast

I have just finished eating my oats and yogurt although it is nearly noon.  It isn’t that I slept so terribly late but rather that I was distracted and did not make a meal.  The kettle is on for tea now.  I have been busy contemplating.  Mostly I am contemplating my books and my lack of nice shelves.  My lack of any shelves in fact.  Something must be done about this.

The less than beautiful paperbacks which I have read at least once but cannot part with are stacked in my bedroom.

The stack of books in my bedroom.

Note to self: this summer strip the white paint off that little table.

My cat thinks this pile of books is a climbing toy.  My cat has many ideas incompatible with my own.  As I cooked that yummy breakfast oatmeal I stood in a puddle of water created by darling kitty who loves to dump out her water dish.  I hate wet socks.  Sophie is her name, but I think it should be Trouble.  She likes to be in my photos too.

Wow that's an interesting wall.

Does this chair make me look fat?

Anyhow, back to the books.  There is also a pile of books that are my second hand finds and brand new splurges all awaiting my undivided attention. They need a home too.

I tremble with anticipation.....or maybe that's just a blood sugar drop.

I do have a pretty stack of old hardcovers.  I remove the dust jackets because I prefer the muted colours of the original covers.  But most of my purchases are paperbacks, read for pleasure not intended to act as art or trophies in my home.

I live in a rented two bedroom apartment.  I am not to blame for the colour on the walls or that nasty beige carpet.  But I am to blame for the unruly piles of books and I have yet to find a solution that appeals to me.   Perhaps I should just open up a second hand book shop.

My Gemini Dream

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I actually don’t put any faith in astrology, but as a Gemini I am supposedly of a fickle nature, of twin minds so to speak.  In truth I am not fickle at all, but I do sometimes have two minds, or at least I do when it comes to the home interiors I am attracted to.  What’s a girl to do when she loves this….

image via headoverheels.blogspot.com

and this….

image via myfrenchcountryhome.blogspot.com

Well……I try to find something that blends the two.  The element that seems to be in strongest opposition is colour.  One uses rich earthy tones and jewel tones while the other uses a blend of neutrals and focuses on variety of texture.  So I look for what they have in common and I bring items into my home trusting that if I love it can make it work.

Features in common include patina and texture that adds a richness that comes from time worn and well loved furniture that gets more beautiful with age because it was well made to begin with.  I love colour, but creams, browns and whites are also colours I love.  Instead of treating them as layers of neutrals they become part of the many colours I surround myself with.

image via headoverheels.blogspot.com

image via headoverheels.blogspot.com

image via jansseninteriors.blogspot.com

image via habituallychic.blogspot.com

image via anindiansummer.blogspot.com

Texture like this, combines beautifully with colours like this.

image via artsyblogspot.com

image via diyonlinemag.com

image via bohemianbedding.com

image via vandm.com

image via homefurnituredb.com

Mix antiques and reclaimed wood…..

image via vastinterior.co.nz

with vintage industrial….

and a touch of modern.

image via beinteriordecorator.com

This image below combines the modern clean lines of a tall narrow table, layered with a detailed antique table that fits just underneath.  I love it!

image via anindiansummer.blogspot.com

 

 

 

Oh I Love the Details!

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A little goes a long way.  Tufted furniture is trendy right now but even if, like me, you love it, you can keep your room from looking dated by not overindulging.  A smaller piece or one big piece that you will truly love for ever should be enough.  Tufted leather chesterfields are hot right now.  Although I like the look I think I might grow tired of it.  I would go for an ottoman or perhaps some tufting on the back of a chair.

source unknown to me

image via beinteriordecorator.com

Button tufting really softens the look of leather furniture.

Just say no to this….

image via apartment therapy

I love nail head trim too!  It can be subtle like this where it is tone on tone.

image via carsmach.com

Or it can offer a contrast like this Tommy Bahama piece.

image source unknown to me

Or this decorative use of nailhead.

image found on about.com-furniture

Look at those cute little feet peeking out.  Legs and feet are another furniture detail I love.

I love chunky legs.

image via reclaimedlumberproducts.com

And delicate legs.

image via tablelegs.com

Metal legs.

image via gardencottage.com

image via furniturestorenc.com

image via architecdecorating.com

Turned wood legs and feet.

image via cococozy.com

image via crateandbarrel.com

Hardware like pieces these from rusticahardware.com get my heart racing!

And don’t you just love this image from Sunburst Knobs?

image via sunburstknobs.com

 

Wrought iron and cast iron always appeal to me.

image via vermontslateart.com

From Charles P Rogers beds to salvage finds on etsy…Chandeliers….

image via housetohome.co.uk

fireplaces and stoves…

image via houseofreclaim.comimage via luxuryhousingtrends.com

 

 

And candlesticks.

image via tenandahalfthousandthings.co.uk

These are just a few of the things I would include in my home; the details that will catch my eye and challenge my bank account.